COMMON SENSE CUSTOMER SERVICE (CS) GUIDELINES
Your company makes a mistake, how you respond to it will speak volumes about your CS commitment.
In retail, how well you read people is critically important. One size approach does not fit all. Some customers want a lot of attention and assistance and others just want to be acknowledged and allowed to browse the store. Study a customer’s body language can help you determine the best approach. This skill and approach may help you become more customer centric.
Listening is important too. Not only hearing but also listening for verbal and non-verbal communication. Be engaged and listen with your entire body.
When you make promises, keep them. If you tell your customer you will call them back today, do it. Even if you don’t have an answer or can’t provide closure about a situation, call them. If necessary, leave a voicemail to let them know you are a person of your word.
Phone support is important as well as the proper approach but many times, you can streamline a process to mitigate a call. Customers may not realize you did this, but you’re providing better service by eliminating them from having to make a call.
As a service provider, try to empathize with your customer and put yourself in their position as much as possible. How would you want to be treated in that situation? On the other hand, what would you want to be done differently?
Ask your customers for feedback – see if this can be done informally. Weave or integrate this into chitchat or small talk. Pick up clues on how they feel about your service and brand. The more structured approach would be to survey them through a formal process. Word on the street is that many consumers are tired of that approach so try and gather valuable feedback through relationship building.
Sometimes, business providers need to do tasks on behalf of their clients, especially if the clients are running into issue, confronting too much red tape or just getting frustrated. When providers staying close to their customers while they complete forms, go through unfamiliar, or processes that have changed, they are in a better position to intervene if necessary.
Sometimes, a thank you is all your customer wants to hear. They just want to be appreciated and know you care.
If possible, it’s preferable for customers wanting support to reach someone in the service department.
During business hours as much as possible help your clients avoid voicemail. If necessary, use voicemail and return their call as soon as you can.
Your billing statement should be clear. If your call center receives plenty of calls because of the design of the billing statement, maybe it’s time to redesign the billing statement.
Every time you meet with your customers, make it a point talking with them about future requirements.
Find areas of similarity between you and your customer. Ask dissatisfied customers how you can win back their business.
Bear in mind that no product or service will stay the same forever.